The Diversity of Lignocellulosic Biomass Resources and their Evaluation for Use as Biofuels and Chemicals
Lignocellulose as the most abundant biomass on the earth, represents a major source of carbon for biofuels and other chemical compounds. In this chapter we described diverse distribution of lignocellulosic resources, the main characters of each biomass material and their current applications on biomass-conversion to biofuels and chemical products. Because plant cell walls are of complicated structures and diverse functions, we discussed efforts and the potential for any modification of plant cell walls towards high biomass-digestibility and biofuel production by genetic engineering of energy crops. Finally, we evaluated the various lignocellulosic resources not only on their biofuel conversion efficiency, but also on their environmental and economic effects, which might help guide the direction of future research and development work on lignocellulosic resources.